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Paramedic awarded €5k after being fired over allegedly threatening workmates for 'grassing him up' over sick leave

In the case, the paramedic attended a football match the day after he went on sick leave.

File photo
File photo
Image: Shutterstock/Estrada Anton

A PARAMEDIC WHO was fired after issuing alleged threats to workmates over a covert “sick leave” photograph while attending a son’s football match has been awarded €5,000 for his unfair dismissal.

In a ruling at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), Adjudication Officer, Louise Boyle has found that the dismissal of the paramedic by the ‘Ambulance Provider’ was procedurally flawed.

However, Boyle found that the paramedic contributed to his own dismissal.

In the case, the paramedic went on sick leave complaining of diarrhoea on 6 April 2018 and attended a football match that his son was playing in the following day.

However, the Operations Manager for the employer had been advised by some employees in advance that the paramedic would be phoning in sick and would be attending the football match.

The employer requested a person to attend the football match and take a photo of the paramedic and this was presented to the complainant by the employer’s HR manager on his return to work.

After shown the photo, the employer alleged that the paramedic went to the staff room and told his colleagues “I know one of you f**kers grassed me up and when I find out who it is, God help them”.

The employer also alleged that the paramedic said “I know who done (sic) it now and that person forgot one crucial thing, my brother in Derry”.

The employer outlined that the employees whom this comment was directed at believed it was a reference to the paramedic’s brother who they believed had been in prison.

The paramedic was suspended with pay pending the investigation concerning the alleged threat to work colleagues.

At the WRC hearing the paramedic denied making any threats.

The paramedic was employed since 2014 to his dismissal on 29 May 2018.

However, the paramedic was subsequently dismissed for gross misconduct for making the alleged threat.

Boyle stated that the involvement of two persons in each stage of the disciplinary procedures was a significant detriment to a fair process and therefore unreasonable.

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Gordon Deegan

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